Midtown 'like no other market' as more companies expand, new towers soar

Atlanta developer Greenstone Properties started construction on a $150 million office tower in Midtown, another sign that developers expect strong job growth will continue in the city’s burgeoning technology center.

Greenstone Properties and affiliates of Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division announced they secured construction financing for the 12-story tower. It will feature 312,000 square feet of office space at 14th and Spring streets.

US Bank is the construction lender.

The new tower will rise next to a 14-story apartment building with 339 units. It will also connect to an urban park by Spring and Williams streets.

The project, known as 14th + Spring, will also feature amenities such as rooftop terraces, with “unimpeded views of the Atlanta skyline,” the developer said.

HKS is leading the design. Balfour Beatty is the contractor.

The office tower adds to 2.5 million square feet of spec office development in Midtown, according to CBRE Inc.

Over one-third of the space is officially pre-leased, but larger expansions from technology companies that appear to be looming in Midtown are not yet counted in that percentage. It could be as high as 45%, CBRE said.

Spec office construction describes towers underway without tenants signed to leases. A boom in those projects often signals strong confidence in job growth.

A catalyst for activity in Midtown is Technology Square, one of the country’s top innovation districts, fueled by the expansion of Georgia Tech and its powerful engineering school. Tech Square has raised the profile of Midtown Atlanta as a vibrant technology hub in the Southeast. That is drawing attention of brand name West Coast companies.

Two may be on the verge of major expansions in Midtown, Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Microsoft Corp. Others, including the electric car maker Tesla and social media giant Facebook, have either reportedly shown interest in Midtown office space or may be close to signing a new lease.

“Midtown right now is like no other market I have seen in Atlanta since I’ve been doing this,” said Chris Scott, a partner with developer Greenstone Properties. “The demand is coming from tenants that are not only here in Atlanta but from other [states] like California and cities like New York and Dallas.”

HKS, Greenstone

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